Labour are NOW wrong on the economy, not before
New Labour didn’t spend to much. New Labour ran a surplus in four of the thirteen years it was in power – just to put that in context, that’s more surplus’s than Major and Thatchers governments combined. And no one’s saying that the Tories spent too much – so lets do ourselves a favour and absolutely categorically deny that Labour spent too much – the figures speak for themselves.
The pre-crisis deficit level, in comparison to increases in growth in the economy were some of the lowest in the developed world – so New Labour did ‘fix the roof whilst the sun was shining’ (to use Osborne’s phraseology). New Labour fixed the roof of the leaking hospitals whilst the sun was shining. New Labour also fixed the roof of the leaking schools whilst the sun was shining. Please lets not forget that the NHS was only a matter of a couple of years from collapse under the Tory stewardship of the 80’s and 90’s.
Andy Burnham is doing the Labour Party the biggest disservice he can do by capitulating to Tory mythology.
For a quick, brief review of the economic crisis – the deficit was caused by the financial crisis, the financial crisis did not cause the deficit.
Liz Kendall’s pragmatic approach to the economy is a fair way of viewing the tough issues and decisions that we face. We can’t oppose everything and spend everything without working out where the money will come from.
But should we apologise for saving the NHS? Should we apologise for raising standards in schools? Should we apologise for the biggest increases in workers rights, responsibilities, and business growth that the UK has ever seen. Absolutely not.
Burnham and Corbyn economics leave a lot to be desired. This isn’t about returning to New Labour – this is about building on the back of the success of most prolific, achievement laden post war government of all time.